Ephesus: The Church That Lost its Love
The book of Revelation brings the battle that started at the beginning of history when Satan rebelled—resulting in mankind’s plunge into sin and loss of dominion over Earth—to a glorious conclusion as Jesus Christ returns to Earth and claims what is rightly His!
Letters to the Seven Churches–
EPHESUS: The Church that Lost Its Love!
I. The History of the City and Church
1. Ephesus’ prominence—
A. It was a great seaport.
B. It boasted a population of 600,000 people. Although, not the capital, it was the largest and wealthiest city (called the Light of Asia). Ephesus means “desirable one”.
C. It was the world-wide center of worship of Artemis.
D. A philosopher (Heroclitus) never laughed in Ephesus. Why? People were so immoral. To be a godly church in Ephesus would be so difficult.
2. The church’s founding– Established by Paul. Priscilla, Aquila, Apollos, and Timothy all ministered here. Maybe even the Apostle John served here. A book of the NT was written to her. Many NT letters were written from here. They were real people with real needs. Paul ends the letter in 6:24 with, “Grace be with all those who love our Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity (incorruptibility—unending existence—genuineness). Amen.”
This letter is about 40 years after founding—a 2nd generation of believers.
II. The Description of Christ
1. “He who holds the seven stars in His right hand, who walks in the midst of the seven golden lampstands.” (1: 12-13)
gold—most precious to the Lord
lampstands (church)—the light is Jesus
“midst”—we don’t have to pray “Lord, be with us.” He is.
He cares about our church to be in her midst.
III. The Approval—2:2, 3, and 6
1. It was a productive church (your works, labor, patience)
2. It was a pure church (you cannot bear those who are evil) She
hated the deeds of the Nicolatians (to rule the people).
3. It was a patient, enduring church (repeated thought in text)
IV. The Condemnation—2:4
1. She deliberately left her first love (love for Jesus).
The “first” love may be in first in time or ranking.
The people did what was right but for the wrong reason.
V. The Counsel—2:5
1. Remember from where you have fallen.
3. Return to the love that formerly motivated them.
VI. The Promise—2:7
1. If the shoe fits, wear it…If we need correction—let’s change!
2. From these 7 letters, it appears all genuine believers in Jesus are
overcomers; not a special class of believers with greater reward.